Riot Ten Talks His Massive 2017!

Dec 18, 2017
Riot Ten Talks His Massive 2017!
2017 has been a breakthrough year for American DJ/Producer Riot Ten. His productions have seen incredible artist support, from The Chainsmokers opening many of their tour dates with his first single of the year “Fuck It,” to the biggest track of his career “Rail Beaker” being dropped live consistently by NGHTMRE, SLANDER, and Excision. With the release of the “Rail Breaker” remix package last Friday on Dim Mak and the announcement of his massive 50+ date tour with Datsik next year, there was no better time to catch up and celebrate with Riot Ten.
This has been a year full of milestones with major releases like “Fuck It” and “Rail Breaker,” and you’ve put yourself in an awesome position for 2018 as you’ll be embarking on a major tour with Datsik. What has 2017 been like through your eyes?
Honestly, it's been the best rollercoaster ride of my life haha. I started the year with the release of “Fuck It” which really put me in a position to take 2017 by storm. The support we (Sullivan King and I) saw on the song was so huge, from The Chainsmokers opening their tour dates with it, to the hottest names in bass music playing it at every festival and seeing it at #1 across the dubstep charts. I couldn't have asked for more.
A few songs later and I was back with what we knew would be my biggest ever, “Rail Breaker,” and all it took was a live video of it being played to thousands of headbangers. The power of social media is amazing. Teaming up with Dim Mak on it was a blessing and there was no question it belonged in their hands. The roll out of the release, the traction it was seeing in live sets [check out the artist support], breaking through artist genre lines before it even dropped, to hitting #1 again on the dubstep charts, was so incredible to watch happen.
Fast forward to now, and I just announced that I'll be touring with Datsik in 2018 on over 50 shows in North America. What is life haha?! I'm just happy to be here. I also couldn't be more thankful for my entire team; from my managers Mike and Sean at Interlock, to all of my agents at Circle, UAA, and Poster Child, to everyone at Dim Mak, my videographer Matty Vee, and so many others who have been instrumental in making this year so special for me.

“Rail Breaker” has really taken the world by storm. When you were initially making the track, did you have any idea of the widespread success that the track would have?
It's difficult to say. I don't think you really ever know whether a song is going to connect to that extent or not. I knew I had a big tune, especially once Rico Act laid down the vocals, but there have been times in the past when I felt I had a big one as well and it didn't perform to expectations. I think I knew this record was going to be huge about 24 hours after I posted the first video teasing it, which was from my set at Ever After Festival near Toronto. The entire crowd was literally headbanging in sync with each other. It was magical haha.

Talk to us about the new “Rail Breaker” remix package that's out. What's it like hearing your work reinterpreted by so many producers?
I love it! And I'm a fan of every single producer that remixed it. You're going to get a taste of everything and that's what we aimed for from the beginning – from heavy dubstep, to riddim, to trap, even a future bass remix that is KILLER. Some of the remixes are already making rounds in live sets, which is great to see. I'm excited to see all of the fan responses. Major love to Squnto, Yookie, Monxx, Code Pandorum and EXSSV for coming on board for this.

Can you talk a little about your musical background and growth as an artist to where you are today? Do you feel like there have been any major turning points or particularly significant moments that have enabled your success?
Well, it's a long story, but I started producing hip hop music in high school. Fast forward a bit, and after attending my first few raves, I became inspired by the EDM culture in Texas. I decided to see what I could do while also staying true to my love of hip hop. I was one of the originators of that “hard trap” sound that you hear today and alongside “In The Pit” by Skellism, still have some of the most successful songs in the sub-genre. As a producer though, I never wanted to be labeled by one genre, so I began producing dub music and other heavy bass-driven tunes that I coined “Hype or Die.” When you think of Riot Ten, I want you to think about how HYPE my live shows are. I rarely produce a record that I cannot incorporate into my performances.

What inspires you to make the music that you make?
I draw inspiration from everywhere, but my family is everything to me and they are where most of my inner drive comes from. I just had my second child (a boy), who is actually still in the hospital after a couple pf months. He was born prematurely, weighing less than 2 pounds. I'm proud to say that he's now over 5 pounds and growing! If all continues to go well, we should be able to bring him home in the next month. All of your thoughts and prayers would mean the world to us!

Your shows have taken you to stages around the world and you've seen your fair share of pits opening up during your sets. What is the craziest mosh pit you've seen to date?
Wow, that's tough. I honestly couldn't tell you the last show I played where there wasn’t at least one mosh pit going on. If I had to say one in particular, it would probably be from Tampa on my Rail Breaker tour. I actually got down in the pit and was moshing with a sold out crowd. It was a good idea until I got punched in the face hahaha. It didn't stop me though. I stayed down there until I basically had to run back to the stage to transition.

Sounds insane!! Maybe that answered this next question, but to those unfamiliar, how would you describe a Riot Ten DJ set? What are a few must-play artists for you in your sets at the moment?
Hype or Die is the motto! Expect the rails to be moving by headbangers, expect at least one or more mosh pits. Expect me to come out and join you. Expect me to be as animated on stage as anyone else is out in the crowd. I feed off the energy just like the crowd does. As far as the artists that I always incorporate in my sets, there's so many! All of my sets are different as I try to keep things fresh. But you can expect to hear Excision, Datsik, Barely Alive, Trampa, Svdden Death, EH!DE, Zomboy, Spag Heddy, Monxx, Krimer, Sullivan King, Wooli, and so many others.

What do you have planned for the rest of 2017 and beginning of 2018?
The remixes of “Rail Breaker”! I believe that's going to be the last release of the year. I may put out a mix though on NYE. Definitely look out for that. 2018 is going to be wild. Aside from the 50 or so shows on the Datsik our, there's a ton of festivals confirming right now and we're already working on the fall touring plans, including Asia, Australia and Europe. Outside of touring, the first single from my upcoming EP on Dim Mak is dropping on January 19th! And my EP is going to be releasing in February. More updates on both coming very soon! I also have some huge collaborations in the works as well that I'm excited about. If you follow me on my socials, I'm already teasing a ton of new records on there. and
You can buy or stream your copy of the Riot Ten feat. Rico Act – “Rail Beaker” remixes on your platform of choice today!
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